It is a sad day for the entertainment industry as prolific theater and movie actor Philip Seymour Hoffman was found dead inside his apartment in Manhattan, Sunday morning. Police suspect the cause of death as apparent drug overdose.
Reuters reported that Hoffman was found “unresponsive” on his apartment’s bathroom floor by police who responded to a 911 call. A syringe was reportedly found stuck in his arm, while a couple of small plastic bags “containing a substance suspected of being heroin” were also found. The Emergency Medical Service declared Hoffman “dead at the scene,” with the police suspecting his death to be caused by drug overdose.
A separate, more detailed article by the New York Daily News, reported that it was the actor’s friend, screenwriter David Katz who discovered the former’s body in only a pair of boxers and a T-shirt at around 11:30 in the morning. Citing sources, the New York Daily News related that Katz went to Hoffman’s place after the latter “failed to pick up his three kids… from his estranged girlfriend at 9 a.m.,” referring to longtime partner, costume designer Mimi O’ Donnel. O’Donnel was said to have contacted Katz, who in turn called Hoffman’s personal assistant Isabella Wing-Davey to ask her to unlock Hoffman’s apartment. It was alleged that the 911 call was made from Wing-Davey’s cell phone. Apart from those mentioned above, “eight glassine envelopes — six empty and two containing what was believed to be heroin,” a “charred spoon that seems to have been used for drugs,” and “two envelopes containing drugs” were reportedly also found at the scene.
Police reports say that the actor was last seen alive at 8 p.m., Saturday.
Meanwhile, Hoffman’s family has released a statement, which read:
We are devastated by the loss of our beloved Phil and appreciate the outpouring of love and support we have received from everyone. This is a tragic and sudden loss and we ask that you respect our privacy during this time of grieving. Please keep Phil in your thoughts and prayers.
An investigation is already underway, with the exact cause of Hoffman’s death and time to be determined following the medical examiner’s investigation.
Hoffman was born on July 23, 1967 in Rochester, New York. An actor and a director, he was known for appearing in supporting roles in movies like “Scent of a Woman” (1992), “Boogie Nights” (1997), “The Big Lebowski” (1998), “The Talented Mr. Ripley” (1999), “Almost Famous” (2000), “The Savages” (2007), and “Moneyball.” In 2005, he appeared on “Capote,” playing the lead role which garnered him a slew of accolades including the Academy Award for Best Actor. His latest film, “A Most Wanted Man,” premiered just a few weeks ago at the Sundance Film Festival. More, a report by IGN claims that Hoffman only had a week of shooting left for the final installment of the “The Hunger Games” trilogy, while the fate of “Happyish,” a series in which he plays the lead remains unclear.
Hoffman was also active in the theater world, both as an actor and as crew member, for which he received nominations from award-giving bodies like the Tony Awards and the Drama Desk Awards. His personal life was marred by struggles with drug and alcohol addiction. In an interview with 60 Minutes, he revealed that he checked himself into rehab and became sober when he was 22 years old. Hoffman apparently stayed clean for more than 20 years after; however, he fell back into the habit, taking prescription pills at first to heroin eventually. But then the actor went to rehab again just last year, reportedly for 10 days, and have been staying in said apartment ever since.
Hoffman is survived by O’Donnell and their children Cooper Alexander (10), Tallulah (7), and Willa (5).